Schalk Brits & Jason Jenkins back for the Bulls vs Crusaders
Springboks, Schalk Brits and Jason Jenkins, are back in the Vodacom Bulls pack for their Vodacom Super Rugby clash against the Crusaders at Loftus Versfeld on Friday.
Brits have served a four-week suspension and will start at hooker, while Jenkins is fit again following injury. Like Brits, he last played for the Vodacom Bulls in their 19-16 win over the Cell C Sharks at the end of March. They replace Jaco Visagie and Jannes Kirsten respectively, with Visagie dropping to the bench and Kirsten moving into the number 7 jersey.
The duo’s return resulted in Vodacom Bulls Head Coach, Pote Human, making two changes in the pack, as well as two in the backline.
In a rotational change, Ivan van Zyl drops out of the match 23 and will be replaced by André Warner at scrumhalf in the starting team, while Warner’s place on the bench is taken by Embrose Papier.
Burger Odendaal, who was a late withdrawal from last weekend’s clash against the Waratahs, has been declared fit and he will start at centre in place of Dylan Sage, who drops out of the matchday squad altogether.
Odendaal and Kotze will man the midfield against the New Zealand outfit.
Human welcomed the return of his two Springboks in the pack.
“Schalk has been itching to play for the last couple of weeks and he will be very keen. Jason also recovered well and looked very sharp in training. Both are players of international standard, so it is great to have them back. Our pack will need to step up to the plate if we want to contain the Crusaders and these two are certainly capable of adding to that.”
Vodacom Bulls captain, Handré Pollard, said they are determined to end this phase of the tournament on a strong footing.
“We travel overseas after this and will only be back at Loftus next month, so this is a very important match for us. We need to do well here in order to maintain our log position and to get some momentum for the tour. Everyone realises what is at stake,” he said.
THE BULLS SQUAD:
- Warrick Gelant (41, 70)
- Cornal Hendricks (34, 55)
- Johnny Kotze (40, 45)
- Burger Odendaal (50, 20)
- Rosko Specman (7, 20)
- Handré Pollard (c; 55, 573)
- André Warner (14, 15)
- Duane Vermeulen (118, 50)
- Jannes Kirsten (26, 10)
- Marco van Staden (19, 15)
- RG Snyman (42, 15)
- Jason Jenkins (46, 35)
- Trevor Nyakane (101, 15)
- Schalk Brits (69, 20)
- Lizo Gqoboka (47, 15)
THE BULLS BENCH:
- Jaco Visagie (40, 5)
- Simphiwe Matanzima (10, 5)
- Wiehahn Herbst (43, 0)
- Thembelani Bholi (36, 6)
- Paul Schoeman (28, 35)
- Embrose Papier (19, 5)
- Manie Libbok (12, 33),
- Divan Rossouw (20, 15)
Vodacom Bulls v Crusaders, ticket frenzy
Pretoria is going to be a buzz of excitement on Friday evening as the Vodacom Bulls prep to take on the Crusaders at Loftus Versfeld at 19h10… in what can only be described as a mouthwatering table-topping clash.
Big Duane Vermeulen, showed his commitment to getting the fans back to Loftus yesterday when he challenged the Blue Bulls Company to make 6000 tickets available at just R20 per ticket.
The BBCo responded: “Duane Vermeulen We hear you big fella, and will RAISE you… all 12 000 tickets on the east upper R20.
Visit https://www.ticketpros.co.za/portal/web/index.php/home/ and click on the DUANE SPECIAL”
The BBCo made all 12 000 tickets on the east upper pavilion at Loftus available for just R20, which was well received by fans, and have started selling quickly.
This was just the start of the ticketing special frenzy, with the rest of the players jumping on and coming up with the concept of an old-school “HAPPY HOUR” at the Loftus ticket office (well actually 2 hours). Fans are invited to get down to the Loftus Ticket office on Thursday between 16h00 and 18h00 to purchase any available ticket in the stadium, including castle corner, for only R50, with the DUANE SPECIAL remaining at R20.
The first 100 people in the queue will also receive a free beer or soft drink, and a wors roll braaied by some of the players while waiting to make their ticket purchase.
Fans can also expect to be hosted and entertained by the Vodacom Bulls Babes and the Legendary Bulletjie!
Vodacom Bulls No8 Duane Vermeulen commented: “Taking on the Crusaders is always an exciting challenge, but never an easy one. It would be amazing to see Vodacom Bulls fans coming out in their masses and making Loftus erupt with their cheers. It’s truly and sincerely a great feeling to know that we have the #BullsFamily behind us.”